At this time, for those who make and promote vans, and also you need to add a efficiency variant, there’s apparently just one choice: making an off-road monster. Sizzling vans are all about most floor clearance, big tires and loads of physique armor. Generally extra energy for those who’ve received the money. But it surely wasn’t all the time that manner. Sizzling vans was once about going decrease with higher dealing with and extra physique styling. And one of many uncommon examples of making use of that technique to a smaller truck was the 2005 to 2014 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner.
It is technically not the primary sporty Tacoma. That goes to its predecessor, the S-Runner. However the X-Runner regarded rather more the a part of a sports activities truck with its massive hood scoop and aggressive facet skirts and entrance fascia. It picked up different enhancements from the brand new era, equivalent to extra energy.
Why is the Toyota Tacoma X-Runner a future traditional?
The factor in regards to the Tacoma X-Runner is that it combines a pickup truck with virtually every little thing we, and certain you, love about sporty automobiles. Rear-wheel drive? Verify. Six-speed guide transmission? Verify. Restricted-slip differential? Verify. Stiffer, lowered suspension? Verify. Sporty styling? You guessed it, examine.
And it is not only a case of an affordable reducing package and a few additional plastic. Toyota proudly proclaimed the actual fact it benchmarked the Nissan 350Z for dealing with. It additionally claimed that the truck might handle 0.9 lateral g on a skidpad.
To attain this, Toyota fitted an X brace (the rationale it is known as X-Runner as an alternative of carrying on the S-Runner identify), stiffer springs and shocks that lowered it by 0.6 inch and a rear anti-roll bar. Its 255-mm Bridgestone Potenza tires, the widest accessible on a Tacoma of that era, did not damage both.
We already talked about that it got here with a six-speed and a limited-slip differential, which enhance the enjoyable issue, however we’ve not touched on the engine. It is a 4.0-liter V6 that makes 236 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque. That is a stable enchancment over the 195-horsepower 3.4-liter engine of the S-Runner, although it is not any totally different than another V6 Tacoma of the period. Nonetheless, a 0-60 mph time of round 7 seconds is not too shabby. With out additional energy, the untouched brakes do not seem to be as a lot of an oversight, both.
And for those who needed extra, there was a factory-supported choice. TRD bought a supercharger package for all of the Tacoma 4.0-liter V6s that could possibly be put in by the vendor that will convey energy as much as 304 horsepower and 334 pound-feet of torque. Sadly, you may’t get it from Toyota anymore. However there’s an organization known as Underdog Racing Growth that also makes and sells the identical primary package. So for those who do end up an X-Runner, you may nonetheless punch up your pickup.
And like we mentioned, it is nonetheless a pickup truck. It will tow 3,500 kilos and has a giant mattress with an 875-pound payload capability. OK, that is not nice, however good luck becoming a e book case or yard’s value of mulch in a Z or an 86.
What’s the very best instance of the Toyota Tacoma X-Runner?
Over the close to decade that the X-Runner was provided, it by no means actually modified a lot. That signifies that the cleanest instance you could find for the cash is your very best selection. And one with a supercharger already put in will certainly be probably the most enjoyable.
However for those who’re choosy, one thing to bear in mind is that the Tacoma line received a refresh for the 2012 mannequin 12 months. Styling was very barely tweaked, however the massive bonus was the addition of USB and Bluetooth connectivity for cellphone and audio. It is positively good to have, nevertheless it would not be a deal breaker for us.
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Are there any good options to the Toyota Tacoma X-Runner?
One of many issues that distinguishes the X-Runner is that it is a smaller sports activities truck at a time when the principle options had been full-sizers such because the Dodge Ram SRT-10 and Chevy Silverado SS. And the guide transmission was comparatively uncommon.
However there was one different sporty small truck different: the first-generation Chevy Colorado. There was an choice package deal known as ZQ8 that provided lowered suspension and a few styling tweaks. It was additionally accessible on each the four- and five-cylinder vans. However the actual candy spot was the 5.3-liter V8 mannequin launched in 2009 that made 300 horsepower. You could not get it with a guide, however the rumbly exhaust and additional energy would possibly make it straightforward to forgive.